Racial slurs have been spray-painted on a road that leads to Hongoeka Marae near Plimmerton, Porirua.
“Black c****”, “N***** Only”, and the acronym “SFH” — believed to be in reference to the Mongrel Mob — were scrawled across the road in white spray paint.
Kahu Ropata of Ngāti Toa Rangatira said he was shocked at the offensive tagging, especially having recently returned home from the Kīngitanga’s hui-ā-motu in Ngāruawāhia “to a community that I thought was very supportive of our marae and te iwi Māori”.
He claims it was a racial attack done by a person or a group emboldened by the Government’s position on Māori issues.
“He aha au e kōrero pēnei ana? I te mea koinei te wā tuatahi i roto i tōku oranga katoa kua pēnei mai ētahi tangata, tētahi tangata ki a mātou o tēnei kāinga (Why do I say that? Because it’s the first time in my life that someone, or some people, have done this to our community),” he said.
He’s concerned it’s only a sign of things to come.
“I think we need to prepare for probably a couple of years of civil unrest as we sort of work out our Government and also our position as iwi Māori,” he said.
When asked if he thought the gang had anything to do with the tagging, Ropata was incredulous, saying he believed the gang was being falsely incriminated.
“Kua roa mātou a Ngāti Toa me ngā kēnge o tēnei takiwā e noho tahi ana, ā, ētahi wā ko ngā piki me ngā heke, heoi anō, i te mutunga iho o te rā, ka taea au te kī ehara nō rātou ēnei tūmomo āhuatanga (We of Ngāti Toa have long lived together with the gangs in this area, and while there’s been ups and downs, at the end of the day I can say they aren’t responsible for this).”
Ropata said they plan to report the incident to police but would like to appeal to “those types of people who did what they did” to simply stop.